Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 53.27
Liaison Prabhakar Shrestha
Submission Date Feb. 20, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Nebraska - Lincoln
EN-3: Student Life

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Vivian Nguyen
Graduate Assistant
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have one or more active student groups focused on sustainability?:
Yes

A brief description of active student groups focused on sustainability:

Sustain UNL is the prominent student organization dedicated to encouraging students to live, learn, and lead for the environment. Sustain UNL has hosted workshops, community service events, fundraisers, socials, and weekly meetings to help interested students take the next step towards being good stewards of the environment.

The ASUN Environmental Sustainability Committee is the student government’s main outlet for sustainability initiatives. The Committee presents new opportunities and facilitates continuing projects every year that foster environmental stewardship, knowledge in sustainability, and community outreach. ESC has been highly active since its inception in 2011, and continues to engage UNL in improving campus sustainability.

The Environmental Leadership Program is a program targeted at developing Freshmen and Sophomores into leaders in sustainability on campus. Twenty students are paired with an ESC member to assist with their projects. The ELP class facilitates the Sustainability Roundtable every Fall, bringing together local experts in areas such as waste, food, water, policy, transportation, energy, and more. In the Spring, ELP implements their own project original to that year’s class.


The website URL where information about the student groups is available (optional):
Does the institution have gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects where students are able to gain experience in organic agriculture and sustainable food systems?:
Yes

A brief description of the gardens, farms, community supported agriculture (CSA) or fishery programs, and/or urban agriculture projects:

Students at UNL have the opportunity to participate in a student run organic farm located on East Campus. Bugeater Farm provides experiential learning for students interested in gardening, operating Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), or supporting local food grown by their peers.


The website URL where information about the gardens, farms or agriculture projects is available (optional):
Does the institution have student-run enterprises that include sustainability as part of their mission statements or stated purposes (e.g. cafés through which students gain sustainable business skills)?:
Yes

A brief description of the student-run enterprises:

Alumin8 is an aluminum recycling startup by College of Engineering students that converts aluminum cans into recycled specialized aluminum products to be sold online or other reusable products like silverware that are donated to the local homeless community. Their cause helps minimize the metal waste generated by removing aluminum from this flawed sustainability cycle and transforming it into more permanent forms. Alumin8's two-pronged strategy allows them to tackle aluminum waste while establishing relations between local university students and the homeless.


The website URL where information about the student-run enterprises is available (optional):
Does the institution have sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives through which students can develop socially, environmentally and fiscally responsible investment and financial skills?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives:

The Green Fund Selections Committee consists of 7 voting, student members and is advised by Prabhakar Shrestha, UNL’s Sustainability Coordinator. With help from an external board of subject matter experts, these 7 students review grant proposals and make recommendations to senate about which projects should be funded. Every year, 4 students will be elected to the committee by the student body during ASUN elections, and then 3 students will be appointed by the ASUN appointments board.


The website URL where information about the sustainable investment funds, green revolving funds or sustainable microfinance initiatives is available (optional):
Does the institution have conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
Yes

A brief description of the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability:

Each Fall Semester, the Environmental Leadership Program ran by the ASUN Student Government hosts a Sustainability Roundtable. The event is a workshop where students interact with local experts in areas such as water, waste, food, energy, transportation, and policy in the context of sustainability.

Each Spring Semester, the ASUN Environmental Sustainability Committee hosts "EarthStock," a month-long celebration of Earth Day. EarthStock features a multitude of events, but also includes speakers, artists, documentaries, art, and discussions on sustainability available for all students and community members to attend.

The E.N. Thompson Forum's mission is to bring a diversity of viewpoints on international and public policy issues to the University and the residents of the state to promote understanding and encourage debate. Over the past two decades, the E.N. Thompson Forum on World Issues has established itself as one of the preeminent speakers series in higher education. In 2011-2012, the Forum focused on water and global security. In 2015-2016, the focus was activism, one speaker included Bill McKibben, who spoke about climate activism.

The Heuermann Lectures focus on addressing issues related to world-wide security in the areas of food, natural resources, and renewable energy for people, as well as on securing the sustainability of rural communities where the vital work of producing food and renewable energy occurs. Over the past five years, these agricultural lectures bring distinguished speakers to the University of Nebraska - Lincoln, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources to address topics of interest and importance.


The website URL where information about the conferences, speaker series, symposia or similar events related to sustainability is available (optional):
Does the institution have cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability that have students as the intended audience?:
Yes

A brief description of the cultural arts events, installations or performances related to sustainability:

The ASUN Environmental Sustainability Committee hosts many events during April for EarthStock. Cultural arts is always included in the festivities through displays, local artist performances, local art exhibitions, poetry, and film media.

The Lincoln Environmental Arts Festival, or Leaf, is a celebration of environmental appreciation in Lincoln. The festival provides free events allowing UNL and greater Lincoln communities to experience and admire the culture of Lincoln and the natural environment preserved throughout. The focus is to inspire those involved to take action in making positive changes to our environmental resources at risk. This festival’s top priority is to use the influence of popularization to overexpose what should be an ethical norm.

UNL Park(ing) Day is part of a global movement where citizens, designers and activists collaborate to change parking spots into habitable, park-like spaces for a day. The event began in 2005 when Rebar, a San Francisco art and design studio, converted a metered parking stall into a temporary public park. The local project is directed by Peter Olshavsky, assistant professor of architecture at the university, and sponsored by the American Institute of Architects' Lincoln chapter, BVH Architects, The Clark Enersen Partners, Clark Architects Collaborative 3 and Schemmer.


The website URL where information about the cultural arts events, installations or performances is available (optional):
Does the institution have wilderness or outdoors programs (e.g. that organize hiking, backpacking, kayaking, or other outings for students) that follow Leave No Trace principles?:
Yes

A brief description of the wilderness or outdoors programs that follow Leave No Trace principles:

Outdoor Adventures offers students opportunities to engage in the natural world around them, while instructing all participants to use 'leave no trace' principles and offset all carbon emissions from travel using the Bonneville Environmental Foundation.


The website URL where information about the wilderness or outdoors programs is available (optional):
Does the institution have sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences (e.g. choosing a sustainability-related book for common reading)?:
No

A brief description of the sustainability-related themes chosen for themed semesters, years, or first-year experiences:
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The website URL where information about the sustainability-related themes is available (optional):
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Does the institution have programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills?:
Yes

A brief description of the programs through which students can learn sustainable life skills:

The Environmental Leadership Program (ELP) is targeted at developing Freshmen and Sophomores into leaders in sustainability on campus. Twenty students are paired with an Environmental Sustainability Committee member and assist on their projects. The ELP class facilitates the Sustainability Roundtable every Fall, bringing together local experts in areas such as waste, food, water, policy, transportation, energy, and more. In the Spring, ELP implements their own project original to that year’s class. (http://asun.unl.edu)

EcoLeaders is also sustainability-themed housing in one section of a dorm through the Learning Community program. EcoLeaders live and work together to work on a variety of sustainability projects in their own dorm and the community.


The website URL where information about the sustainable life skills programs is available (optional):
Does the institution offer sustainability-focused student employment opportunities?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability-focused student employment opportunities offered by the institution:

The UNL Office of Sustainability hires interns during the summer and school year to assist in projects to enhance campus sustainability.


The website URL where information about the student employment opportunities is available:
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Does the institution have graduation pledges through which students pledge to consider social and environmental responsibility in future job and other decisions?:
No

A brief description of the graduation pledges:
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The website URL where information about the graduation pledges is available (optional):
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Does the institution have other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives?:
No

A brief description of the other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives:
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The website URL where information about other co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives is available (optional):
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Estimated percentage of students (full-time and part-time) that participate annually in sustainability-focused co-curricular education and outreach programs (0-100):
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.